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You may have seen in the news recently that an American Airlines passenger made a claim on Twitter that AA had “robbed” her of over $8,000 worth of items out of her luggage.
In since deleted posts on Twitter and Facebook, Anna Knight claimed that when she picked up her bag from baggage claim at Miami International Airport, over $8000 of priceless souvenirs from her trip were gone – all that was inside was airline equipment, harnesses and crew member clothing. She posted several times that American Airlines had ROBBED (her words not mine) her of over $8000, and urged everyone to boycott AA.
What actually happened
As long-time readers of Points With a Crew know, I’m generally fairly skeptical when we hear claims of this sort on social media of how airlines (or anyone really) have “wronged” them
(SEE ALSO: Passenger kicked off plane after crew says “Merry Christmas”)
(SEE ALSO: YouTuber Adam Saleh kicked off a Delta plane… for speaking Arabic?)
Generally I find that there are 2 sides to every story, and this is no different. Once American Airlines started investigating the situation, they found that what had ACTUALLY happened was that Ms. Knight had TAKEN THE WRONG BAG! So instead of her being robbed, technically it was HER that had done the thievery! (though accidentally)
Her bag was waiting for her at the lost items location at Miami airport, and she was reunited with her stuff.
That reminds me of a flight our family took with 17 pieces of luggage to the Reno airport. We got almost all of them right away but then my wife happened to notice that another lady had accidentally taken one of our pieces of luggage (thinking it was hers)! So while I was at the rental car counter getting our car straightened out, Carolyn had to sprint through the airport to track down the lady with our last piece of luggage!
American was gracious in their response
It happens and we’re glad we could help clear things up! `
— American Airlines (@AmericanAir) October 25, 2018
Hat Tip: People
But more importantly, what do you do to make sure that you’re getting the right luggage at baggage claim? Leave your ideas in the comments
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“It was HER (sic) that (sic)”…. Correct would be “It was SHE who….”
Not the first time people took to social media with the wrong “facts” and blasted a company. I have seen more than one small business actually close down due to people posting what they thought were facts. It is just wrong.
Sure, this person made a mistake, but she had NO RIGHT to accuse the airline of stealing her stuff.
First of all her bag didn’t have a priority tag!!! That bag did. That’s right i know who’s bag that was that she took. Also, she went through all that passenger’s personal stuff and threw it on the ground. It seems that she violated that person’s privacy. Never mind the fact that she took the bag out of the airport all the way home!!! That’s right, who robbed who here ??? Oh that’s right (allegedly it was all jet lag) She even filed a fraudelant police report. Isn’t that a crime??
This is such a great example of stupid. People seem to think that the internet is just the place to flip out and vent their frustrations. They have no life, so no friends to vent to … they take to the internet. This garbage can do real harm, as so many idiots do not understand that anyone can post anything anytime on the internet. The internet is a wonderful communications vehicle, but soon nobody with an IQ over 60 will pay any attention to any of it. Such a shame.
Sure it wasn’t Bulldog?
“What do you do to make sure that you’re getting the right luggage?”
LOL – that’s what we do now as well 🙂
You put a unique luggage tag on your luggage and you CHECK the airline tag to make sure it is your bag BEFORE you take it. I don’t travel all that often and even I know that.
I just put a big fake bomb in mine, then look for the TSA and Police and FBI gathered around a piece of luggage, and I know that’s mine.
Like thousands of others I have plain black suitcases, unlike many they’re TravelPro (but still don’t look all that different). What I did about 2 years ago was to buy customs embroidered name tapes (uniformnametape.com) that snap onto the handle. These customs embroidered with my last name in a bright orange make my bags easy to spot. I’ve never taken or had my bag taken by mistake (close a few times), and now I never should. Fairly important when you fly over 100k miles per year.
Most anyone who has traveled extensively has had someone else (hopefully mistakenly) grab your checked bag as it is offloaded on the luggage carousel. So as to prevent this, most frequent flyers sprint to the luggage area to identify their offloaded luggage before this occurs. It certainly helps to distinctively mark your luggage with a bright tag, given that about 90% of luggage in the US is colored basic black. A larger issue is that anyone can log on to social media and (wrongly) lambaste the perceived perceived offending party, whether correct or not.
Mostly I don’t check bags. Having said that, you still have to take the right bag from the overhead or from the jetbridge after a regional flight. So I double check that it actually has my name on it. I don’t take the bag until I am 100% sure it’s mine.
I use bright red Samsonite polypropylene (not polycarbonate) bags. Very distinctive and not very common. In over 200 trips, I have only seen an identical bag once. I like the polypropylene as it is less brittle than polycarbonate, strong and flexible enough to withstand impacts and being crushed without cracking.
I had a guy point out the wrong bag to a Park & Fly driver. He put my bag in his trunk and was about to drive out the lot when the bus got to my car. Driver radioed the attendant at the gate and stopped the guy. Lesson learned. Now I watch my bag even in a parking lot bus.
But it was no the Internet, it has to be true…………
I learned decades ago to have luggage that REALLY stands out. A colleague had this pink, paisley luggage. I asked if he borrowed it from his girlfriend. Nope, it was his. We arrived in Chicago and waited at the luggage carousel. Is that my black bag? Nope. Is that my black bag? Nope. Oh, there is your pink, paisley luggage. Doh. That was easy to spot.
Years later, my luggage is very unique looking with lumberjacks, coffee cups, maple leafs, etc. all over it.
I have however seen other people with the same print. On one occasion, someone on my flight had the same print. So I do also check the luggage tag for my name plus I can see a crack in the plastic near the base of the handle and one of the zipper pull tabs is broken.
So even having a uniquely coloured bag isn’t enough some times.